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There are so many ways to kill a friendship . . . You’re lying, sprawled at the bottom of the stairs, legs bent, arms wide. And while this could be a tragic accident, if anyone’s got a motive to hurt you, it’s me. Bec and Izzy have been best friends their whole lives. They have been through a lot together – from the death of Bec’s mother to the birth of Izzy’s daughter. But t There are so many ways to kill a friendship . . . You’re lying, sprawled at the bottom of the stairs, legs bent, arms wide. And while this could be a tragic accident, if anyone’s got a motive to hurt you, it’s me. Bec and Izzy have been best friends their whole lives. They have been through a lot together – from the death of Bec’s mother to the birth of Izzy’s daughter. But there’s a darker side to their friendship, and once it has been exposed, there is no turning back. So when Izzy’s body is found, Bec knows that if the police decide to look for a killer, she will be the prime suspect. Because those closest to you are the ones who can hurt you the most . . . The Rumour meets The Holiday in this compulsive thriller with a toxic friendship at its heart that keeps you in the dark until the final breathless pages.


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There are so many ways to kill a friendship . . . You’re lying, sprawled at the bottom of the stairs, legs bent, arms wide. And while this could be a tragic accident, if anyone’s got a motive to hurt you, it’s me. Bec and Izzy have been best friends their whole lives. They have been through a lot together – from the death of Bec’s mother to the birth of Izzy’s daughter. But t There are so many ways to kill a friendship . . . You’re lying, sprawled at the bottom of the stairs, legs bent, arms wide. And while this could be a tragic accident, if anyone’s got a motive to hurt you, it’s me. Bec and Izzy have been best friends their whole lives. They have been through a lot together – from the death of Bec’s mother to the birth of Izzy’s daughter. But there’s a darker side to their friendship, and once it has been exposed, there is no turning back. So when Izzy’s body is found, Bec knows that if the police decide to look for a killer, she will be the prime suspect. Because those closest to you are the ones who can hurt you the most . . . The Rumour meets The Holiday in this compulsive thriller with a toxic friendship at its heart that keeps you in the dark until the final breathless pages.

30 review for My Best Friend's Murder

  1. 5 out of 5

    Arna

    All toxic friendships must come to an end. One way or another. 🌟🌟🌟🌟 This one was such a fun read that leaves you constantly questioning who the real victim is and just far things will go before the unthinkable happens. Though parts of it were a bit far fetched, I didn’t see the twist coming at all. This is such a fantastic debut and I’m excited to see what Polly does next! Thank you @simonschusterau for my gifted copy.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Brenda

    Best friends Bec and Izzy have had an up and down relationship all their lives, but when Bec got engaged to Ed, the first person she rushed to tell was Izzy. Izzy and her husband Rich had a little four-year-old daughter, Tilly and on the outside their marriage was happy. But Izzy wanted the best of everything, the most expensive furniture, jewellry, clothing that money could buy. Bec had always felt a little intimidated around her friend. When things began going wrong – with work, Izzy’s continua Best friends Bec and Izzy have had an up and down relationship all their lives, but when Bec got engaged to Ed, the first person she rushed to tell was Izzy. Izzy and her husband Rich had a little four-year-old daughter, Tilly and on the outside their marriage was happy. But Izzy wanted the best of everything, the most expensive furniture, jewellry, clothing that money could buy. Bec had always felt a little intimidated around her friend. When things began going wrong – with work, Izzy’s continual put-downs, and Ed – Bec had finally had enough. She approached Izzy and they fought, badly. But when she returned to Izzy’s home a few hours later, she was horrified at what she found. A crumpled, bloodied Izzy at the base of the stairs. Did she fall? Or was she pushed? Who would be the first person the police looked to if indeed they investigated the incident? My Best Friend’s Murder is the debut novel by Aussie author Polly Phillips, set in London, and is a full-on lesson of an extremely toxic relationship, and what you shouldn’t do in that circumstance. Sweet little Tilly was caught up in the horrors of what went on in the household. She had a devoted dad and a mum who wasn’t sure how to be one. Bec was used and abused, walked all over and still went back for more! Plenty of twists and turns to keep the reader eager for more, My Best Friend’s Murder is one I recommend. With thanks to Simon & Schuster AU for my ARC to read in exchange for an honest review.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Mandy White (mandylovestoread)

    Need a page turner of a thriller? My Best Friends Murder is an addictive story that kept me guessing right until the end. Just when you think you know what is happening, plot twist! Unlikeable characters and fast paced, this was a winner for me. Bec and Izzy have been best friends for years. It is a lopsided relationship with Bec being passive and quiet while Izzy is aggressive and controlling. They have been through a lot together but Bec is finally seeing Izzy’s true colours and has had enough. Need a page turner of a thriller? My Best Friends Murder is an addictive story that kept me guessing right until the end. Just when you think you know what is happening, plot twist! Unlikeable characters and fast paced, this was a winner for me. Bec and Izzy have been best friends for years. It is a lopsided relationship with Bec being passive and quiet while Izzy is aggressive and controlling. They have been through a lot together but Bec is finally seeing Izzy’s true colours and has had enough. But she is not the only one. When Izzy is found, broken at the bottom of the stairs did she fall or was she pushed? And who is involved? You don’t want to miss this one. Thanks to NetGalley and Simon and Schuster for my advanced copy of this book to read.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Veronica ⭐️

    Bec and Izzy have been friends since high school. They'd always been there for each other. Or had they? Now in their 30's Bec is starting to realise that Izzy hasn't always been supportive of her and often she has been downright manipulative. When they were younger Bec was happy to let Izzy have the limelight. She was the beautiful one, everyone loved Izzy and she chose Bec to be her friend. However now she sees the friendship for what it is, one sided and toxic. But Izzy is her best friend and s Bec and Izzy have been friends since high school. They'd always been there for each other. Or had they? Now in their 30's Bec is starting to realise that Izzy hasn't always been supportive of her and often she has been downright manipulative. When they were younger Bec was happy to let Izzy have the limelight. She was the beautiful one, everyone loved Izzy and she chose Bec to be her friend. However now she sees the friendship for what it is, one sided and toxic. But Izzy is her best friend and she can't let go. She needs Izzy's approval for everything. "I'm like one of those old dogs that pine for the owner that beat them." My Best Friend's Murder is a captivating story of toxic friendships, narcissism and gaslighting. Izzy is a master manipulator she has Bec second guessing everything she sees and hears. I  think we have all seen, or even been in, a toxic friendship at some time however these usually end with some sort of blow-up during the teen years or early twenties. Bec and Izzy were in their thirties and I was astounded they were still going on with all this game-play. However, I did find it quite entertaining! The story is narrated in the first person by Bec and as with any first person narrative we are only getting one side of the story. The story starts with the friendship and the back and forward maliciousness with lots of background on both Bec and Izzy and I found this all quite fascinating reading. When Izzy is found near death at the bottom of the stairs the story turns to a mystery. Was she pushed or did she fall? The conclusion to this well-paced mystery took me by surprise. My Best Friend's Murder is a cleverly-plotted narrative that astutely explores the complexity of toxic friendships, manipulation and revenge. *I received a copy from the publisher

  5. 5 out of 5

    Marianne

    My Best Friend’s Murder is the first novel by UK-born Australian author, Polly Phillips. Izzy is at the bottom of the stairs, with a halo of blood forming around her head, while her best friend, Bec carefully examines the scene. What could have led up to this? And what will ensue? Rebecca Maloney is a Features Assistant with Flare magazine. Isabel Waverly is a busy wife and mother. Bec and Izzy have been best friends since they were eleven. Izzy has a perfect life: a beautiful house in Clapham, m My Best Friend’s Murder is the first novel by UK-born Australian author, Polly Phillips. Izzy is at the bottom of the stairs, with a halo of blood forming around her head, while her best friend, Bec carefully examines the scene. What could have led up to this? And what will ensue? Rebecca Maloney is a Features Assistant with Flare magazine. Isabel Waverly is a busy wife and mother. Bec and Izzy have been best friends since they were eleven. Izzy has a perfect life: a beautiful house in Clapham, money to buy the best of everything, the devotion of the gorgeous Rich, an adorable three-year-old daughter, and parents and in-laws who dote on their grandchild. Bec’s life, on the other hand, is not quite that: a dingy flat, an ugly dog, a dull dress sense, and a boyfriend who proposes with the wrong sort of ring. Meanwhile her best friend has the man she’d thought, at fifteen, was about to choose her, before Izzy breezed in and took him. And yet, they are friends. After all, Izzy was there when Bec’s mother died, and no-one else was. When it suited her. Does the story behind that engagement ring set in motion the cascade of events that finds Izzy at the foot of the staircase? Or was it brewing well before that? The way Bec tells it, Izzy does seem adept at stealing Bec’s thunder, at delivering back-handed compliments, at damning her with faint praise. But does Bec’s long-standing resentment over Rich cause her to lay blame too readily at Izzy’s door, and summarily dismiss her denials? Initially, the reader will be wondering just how reliable a narrator Bec really is: do her friends actually treat her like a doormat? Are the perceived slights as bad as she describes? And is her clumsiness as accidental as she makes out? Are her faux-pas more intentional than well-intentioned? Or does Bec’s emotional greed sometimes render her the architect of her own downfall? There aren’t really any characters that will endear themselves to the reader; they are either weak and compliant (or acting that way); or toxic users; thus, care factor very low. And yet, this one’s hard to put down, a bit like being unable to turn away from a train wreck, a compulsion to see just how far things can go wrong. Phillips throws in several red herrings and some jaw-dropping twists before final pages that will leave the reader gasping. A compelling read. This unbiased review is from an uncorrected proof copy provided by Simon & Schuster Australia.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Debbie

    Bec and Izzy have been best friends their whole lives and Bec is forever grateful for Izzy's support after her mother died. But there is a dark side to their friendship that gradually unfolds throughout the story. Bec can't imagine her friend not looking out for her best interests but the clues pointing in that direction are mounting and her brother is concerned for her. When Izzy's body is found at the bottom of the stairs in what appears to have been an accidental fall, the police turn to Bec Bec and Izzy have been best friends their whole lives and Bec is forever grateful for Izzy's support after her mother died. But there is a dark side to their friendship that gradually unfolds throughout the story. Bec can't imagine her friend not looking out for her best interests but the clues pointing in that direction are mounting and her brother is concerned for her. When Izzy's body is found at the bottom of the stairs in what appears to have been an accidental fall, the police turn to Bec for answers. This was the ultimate frenemies tale, that built up speed throughout and leaves you wanting the conclusion. I would have liked to go into this not having read the synopsis, as I do like to be kept wondering through the story. Other than that, it was such a wild and entertaining adventure and so enjoyable.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Vanessa Menezes

    Bec and Izzy have been best friends their whole lives. They’ve been through a lot together – the death of Bec’s mother, the birth of Izzy’s daughter, Bec’s engagement. But there’s a darker side to their friendship, too – and Bec is about to reach breaking point. Then Izzy is found broken and bloodied at the bottom of the stairs. It could have been an accident – perhaps she fell – but if the police decide to look for a killer, then Bec is sure to be their prime suspect. I was attracted to this book Bec and Izzy have been best friends their whole lives. They’ve been through a lot together – the death of Bec’s mother, the birth of Izzy’s daughter, Bec’s engagement. But there’s a darker side to their friendship, too – and Bec is about to reach breaking point. Then Izzy is found broken and bloodied at the bottom of the stairs. It could have been an accident – perhaps she fell – but if the police decide to look for a killer, then Bec is sure to be their prime suspect. I was attracted to this book because of its title and premise and it was definitely an engaging read. The pacing of the plot was good especially that the suspense was maintained throughout. There were enough twists to keep me hooked. The one thing that came to my mind while reading this book was that who needs enemies or haters, when you have best friends like Izzy! The relationship between all the main characters is actually toxic. The only relationship that was real was the one between Bec and her brother, Rob. Since I found almost all the characters shady, I had a doubt on all of them but even then, when the culprit was finally revealed at the end, I was actually surprised because it was kind was unexpected! Overall, an excellent debut novel. Looking forward for her next! Thank You NetGalley and Simon and Schuster UK for this ARC!

  8. 4 out of 5

    marnie | once upon a time book blog

    With this book the suspense starts with the summary. You immediately start to wonder what truely lies behind the friendship of Bec and Izzy. Their friendship is described as a deep and abiding one, where they have shared some of the greatest experiences life has to offer, however, the insight provided into Bec’s thoughts that she might be considered a suspect in Izzy’s death, hints that not everything is as rosy as we are lead to believe. If you looked up the term frenemies in the dictionary, Bec With this book the suspense starts with the summary. You immediately start to wonder what truely lies behind the friendship of Bec and Izzy. Their friendship is described as a deep and abiding one, where they have shared some of the greatest experiences life has to offer, however, the insight provided into Bec’s thoughts that she might be considered a suspect in Izzy’s death, hints that not everything is as rosy as we are lead to believe. If you looked up the term frenemies in the dictionary, Bec and Izzy would be printed in bold and highlighted! The relationship between them is so toxic. I liked Bec’s character, but she did frustrate me and I did wish she would stand up for herself more and not put up with Izzy’s poor behaviour, although I do know firsthand of how hard it is to do this and break ties with someone who has been in your life for so long. The outcome provided a huge twist, which was a real surprise to me and not what I expected at all. This is normally a good thing but, the cause and motivation behind this murder, I found to be a little bit extreme… at first. If you step back and really think about the cause, which I did after a few days as it was still on my mind, I did understand it a lot better. As a debut, I think Polly Phillips has done a great job with this book. The plot and narrative is strong, the writing is sharp, engaging and importantly, was able to hold my attention throughout. I think Polly Phillips has a very promising writing career ahead of her and I look forward to following her writing journey. My Best Friends Murder is a gripping and fast paced read that will have you flicking the pages long into the night. If you are a fan of the psychological fiction genre and stories which are full of secrets, lies, deceit and an in-depth look at a fractured friendship, then I encourage you to add My Best Friends Murder to your books to read in 2021. Thank you to Polly Phillips, Simon & Shuster and NetGalley for allowing me to read an advanced copy of My Best Friends Murder, which I have reviewed honestly and voluntarily.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Amanda - Mrs B's Book Reviews

    *https://mrsbbookreviews.wordpress.com ‘What Ed doesn’t realise is that it’s not about whether or not this row will blow over or how busy Izzy is. It’s about whether or not Izzy and I ever had a friendship at all.’ The complex nature of female friendships, a shock tragedy and unclear motives outline My Best Friend’s Murder by Polly Phillips. A resident of my own home state, Polly Phillips has crafted a shrewd and savvy whodunnit, which allows this new author to make her mark on the domestic thrill *https://mrsbbookreviews.wordpress.com ‘What Ed doesn’t realise is that it’s not about whether or not this row will blow over or how busy Izzy is. It’s about whether or not Izzy and I ever had a friendship at all.’ The complex nature of female friendships, a shock tragedy and unclear motives outline My Best Friend’s Murder by Polly Phillips. A resident of my own home state, Polly Phillips has crafted a shrewd and savvy whodunnit, which allows this new author to make her mark on the domestic thriller scene as a debut novelist. In My Best Friend’s Murder we are presented with a besetting tale of two lifelong friends, who have been there for each other through the ups and downs of life. Bec and Izzy have supported each other through many difficult life events and transitions. But not all friendships are smooth sailing, as we discover through Bec and Izzy’s complex relationship dynamic. Tensions mount, as a sinister tone to their relationship takes a hold, resulting in a deep crisis. What follows is a terrible and tragic incident, which leaves one of the pair dead. With this in mind, police point fingers at Bec, the surviving friend, but is she capable of killing her best friend? Our book club recently settled on My Best Friend’s Murder for our monthly read. I was pleased by this choice as I love to support local writers. Debut novelist Polly Phillips is originally from the UK, but she is now based in Perth. I am always intrigued by new authors and I was keen to give My Best Friend’s Murder a go. Overall, I’m really pleased our book club chose this novel to read, as it raises plenty of discussion points. My Best Friend’s Murder is narrated from the viewpoint of Bec, one half of a long-standing bestie relationship. I appreciated getting to know this character, even though I didn’t have much to like about Bec, or her best friend Izzy. Despite that fact that I didn’t warm to these characters at all, I still enjoyed following their relationship milestones, along with their good and bad moments. Phillips does a fine job of exploring the complexities of a tenuous female friendship. With this particular relationship dynamic, we are presented with a few issues from jealousy, perfection, image, grief, loss, marriage, parenthood, family, fame, fortune and guilt. There is a heavy sheen of toxicity that seems to follow this long-standing connection. Phillips also looks at the hidden areas of difficult female relationships. There is plenty to ponder on and the approach Phillips takes to her narrative is believable. The narrative direction in My Best Friend’s Murder is pretty specific. We are presented with a shocking opening, which then sees Phillips track to the time before, around three months or so, along with some time after the pinnacle narrative event. This was an interesting route to take, that seemed to benefit me as an onlooker following on. There are precise date and time allocations attached to each chapter, which definitely helped to build true sense of what was going on. However, just when I thought I had this one worked out, or distinguished which character was responsible for something, the plot changed direction. My Best Friend’s Murder is a sharp novel with an acutely plotted storyline. This one really begs the question – can you truly kill a friendship? I liked this question very much! With two rather dynamic lead female characters, filled with their own issues and problems, the male cast did seem to pale in comparison. I could see the purpose of male cast members such as Ed and Rich, but they definitely did not have the same page presence that their female counterparts. The subsequent support cast add a sense of intrigue to the unfolding events and they also work to enhance the whodunnit factor of this tale. I know I didn’t have the final culprit earmarked at all, so kudos to Phillips for duping me! Domestic thrillers seemed to be all the rage lately and My Best Friend’s Murder slots very nicely into this burgeoning genre. I look forward to seeing what Perth based writer Polly Phillips comes up with next following my appreciation of her debut release. *I wish to thank Simon & Schuster Australia for providing me with a free copy of this book for review purposes. My Best Friend’s Murder is book #7 of the 2021 Australian Women Writers Challenge

  10. 4 out of 5

    Shelleyrae at Book'd Out

    My Best Friend’s Murder is an entertaining domestic thriller from UK journalist Polly Phillips, who currently calls Australia home. “You’re lying, sprawled at the bottom of the stairs, legs bent, arms wide.” Bec and Izzy have been the best of friends since they met, aged eleven. In the years since, Bec has mostly been content to let Izzy set the terms for their relationship, but recently she’s begun to sense that contempt lurks behind Izzy’s backhand compliments and seemingly solicitous advice. Hu My Best Friend’s Murder is an entertaining domestic thriller from UK journalist Polly Phillips, who currently calls Australia home. “You’re lying, sprawled at the bottom of the stairs, legs bent, arms wide.” Bec and Izzy have been the best of friends since they met, aged eleven. In the years since, Bec has mostly been content to let Izzy set the terms for their relationship, but recently she’s begun to sense that contempt lurks behind Izzy’s backhand compliments and seemingly solicitous advice. Hurt and angry, Bec is determined to confront her best friend, but could she really be responsible for her murder? My Best Friend’s Murder is told from Bec’s perspective, beginning with her standing over a broken and bloodied Izzy, before moving back three months previously as Bec and her new fiancé, Ed, celebrate their engagement at home of Izzy and her husband, Rich. The occasion is not the first time that Bec senses something awry between herself and Izzy, but she is surprised by her best friend’s cool behaviour. Well-paced, this is a suspenseful novel as Phillips reveals the history of the friendship between the two women and it’s increasing toxicity. To Bec, Izzy’s behaviour is inexplicable- beautiful, married to her handsome highschool sweetheart with an adorable child, wealthy and ambitious, Izzy has everything, yet she seems to resent Bec’s recent small successes - her engagement, and a potentially career altering opportunity. Phillips skilfully explores the complex dynamic of their friendship, the role each of them play in maintaining the status quo, and how difficult it is for them to let go. With Izzy’s death, Bec is left to grapple with her grief, and her guilt. I admired Phillips subtle, and not so subtle twists, in the plot, and though I wasn’t so enamoured with an element of the ending, it’s a minor flaw in what is otherwise a well told tale. My Best Friend’s Murder is an absorbing read and an accomplished debut.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Fay Flude

    What a frustrating read, in the best way, as all amateur detectives will be desperate to work out just who the killer is! An incredibly engaging plot, with the light of suspicion shining down on so many characters, and readers being led down the wrong path fairly frequently, features which tend to be great ingredients to put in the suspense pot for stirring. Just when you think you have the measure of a character a new part of the narrative exposes that belief to be incorrect and off you go again, What a frustrating read, in the best way, as all amateur detectives will be desperate to work out just who the killer is! An incredibly engaging plot, with the light of suspicion shining down on so many characters, and readers being led down the wrong path fairly frequently, features which tend to be great ingredients to put in the suspense pot for stirring. Just when you think you have the measure of a character a new part of the narrative exposes that belief to be incorrect and off you go again, re-forming your thoughts and impressions and, as is often in my case, sitting and barking up at the wrong tree! Bec and Izzy are supposedly best friends but from very early on it would appear to be a toxic relationship and the dynamic between the two women is very unhealthy. Rather than friendly, supportive, caring and encouragin, the friendship lives and breathes on a massive amount of jealousy and competitiveness. Bec would appear to be down-trodden and the victim out of the pair. Izzy is dominant, vociferous, perfect, clever and manipulative. The friendship certainly makes for explosive dialogue and events and thus, exciting reading. Bec is engaged to Ed but still has feelings for Rich who just happens to be married to Izzy. Rob is Bec's brother and appears to be the only one to tell Bec how it is and attempt to pull apart Bec's delusions. He has a wonderful new relationship, Izzy is going to return to her high powered job and Bec seems to be the only one treading stagnant waters at her magazine assistant's job. It is very difficult to write much more without giving away essential plot details, so suffice to say, if you are looking for a read-into-the-night thriller with lots of lovely detail about the intricacies of human nature and the relationships we form, plus an intriguing opening and an unexpected ending, My Best Friend's Murder could very well be your next read!

  12. 4 out of 5

    Mags Schofield

    I enjoyed reading this book. There are some nasty characters that I loved to hate and the main part of the book paints Izzy as a very nasty manipulative control freak and Bec as the doormat, downtrodden friend. Both appear unhappy with their partners. I think most readers can see the toxic relationship between the two, underlined by Bec's jealousy of Izzy's seemingly perfect life. However all is not as it seems and the pace and style change after Izzy's death. So many people had a motive to push he I enjoyed reading this book. There are some nasty characters that I loved to hate and the main part of the book paints Izzy as a very nasty manipulative control freak and Bec as the doormat, downtrodden friend. Both appear unhappy with their partners. I think most readers can see the toxic relationship between the two, underlined by Bec's jealousy of Izzy's seemingly perfect life. However all is not as it seems and the pace and style change after Izzy's death. So many people had a motive to push her. What happens now? The ending was not a total surprise, but Bec's reaction was, and I'm still left with a few unanswered questions. Thanks to Polly and Pigeonhole for the opportunity to read this page turner.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Nicki

    Frienemy..... Someone who is both friend and enemy, a relationship that is both mutually beneficial or dependent while being competitive, fraught with risk and mistrust. Friendships can be diverse, some are close and loyal,some can last for years and some can be short lived. You can believe that someone is your friend but in reality they are stabbing you in the back at every opportunity and then they are suddenly ghosting you. And then there are the toxic friendships like the one between the two Frienemy..... Someone who is both friend and enemy, a relationship that is both mutually beneficial or dependent while being competitive, fraught with risk and mistrust. Friendships can be diverse, some are close and loyal,some can last for years and some can be short lived. You can believe that someone is your friend but in reality they are stabbing you in the back at every opportunity and then they are suddenly ghosting you. And then there are the toxic friendships like the one between the two characters in this captivating debut thriller.  Bec and Izzy have been best friends since primary school and have supported each other throughout the ups and downs of the roller coaster ride that is also known as life. But as the story unfolds the reader learns that their friendship is rather toxic and appears to mean more to one of the women than it does to the other. The women were complete opposites when it came to their backgrounds, lifestyles, personalities and social standings, they say that opposites attract but that definitely didn't appear to be the case with this relationship. They were each in a relationship, Bec was living with Ed whilst Izzy was married to Rich who was also very close friends with Bec,something that Izzy didn't like one tiny little bit. Izzy and Rich had a lovely three year old daughter called Tilly although I think that Izzy viewed her as more of a fashion statement that a daughter. Tilly was such a sweet little girl and I felt so sorry for her during the chapters that were set on Christmas Day. I can't honestly say that I thought either of the woman were very likeable for various reasons although Bec did have a few redeemable qualities, I liked her caring nature when she was interacting with her dog Missy and little Tilly and I loved the interactions between Bec and her brother Rob. I thought was Rich was a really nice character and I couldn't for the life of me figure out why he put up with Izzy but as they say, appearances can be deceptive. Was he really the lovely person that he appeared to be or was he hiding his true nature behind a mask? Did he push his beautiful wife down the stairs? Had Bec finally had enough of her so called best friend? Was Izzy's death a tragic accident or a case of cold blooded murder? Mostly domestic drama with elements of a mystery/thriller this is a addictive,well written debut that opens with a prologue that hooks the reader in and draws you into the story. It's a compelling study into the complexities of the relationships between the realistic characters,a tale of revenge,deception, jealousy,betrayal and manipulation that keeps the reader guessing and glued to your kindle. It's perfectly paced and when the truth is revealed it is a genuinely unexpected surprise.I really enjoyed this gripping thriller and look forward to reading more of this author's books in the future.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Deborah

    I was part-way through My Best Friend's Murder by Polly Phillips when it occurred to me it might be set in Australia. What I very much liked about that thought was not that it might be set in my home country, but rather it translated into any number of locations. An excellent idea for a debut author which would make the book relevant and relatable across a number of english-speaking markets. Of course there might (also) have been references to places or landmarks I missed or didn't recognise! And I was part-way through My Best Friend's Murder by Polly Phillips when it occurred to me it might be set in Australia. What I very much liked about that thought was not that it might be set in my home country, but rather it translated into any number of locations. An excellent idea for a debut author which would make the book relevant and relatable across a number of english-speaking markets. Of course there might (also) have been references to places or landmarks I missed or didn't recognise! And I very much enjoyed this book, reading it in a sitting on Christmas night when I was supposed to be bingeing on a new Netflix release. Read my review here: https://www.debbish.com/books-literat...

  15. 4 out of 5

    Marnie

    My first official holiday read and it was a gem! I couldn’t put it down and really should’ve set my alarm each night because 1am came around way too quick. I devoured it in two nights. Polly Phillips, you’ve written a cracker of a debut. We’ve all had that toxic friendship. I know many years ago I made a New Year’s resolution to cut my so called ‘friends’ who brought me down and didn’t bring positivity into my life. I cut those ties and I never looked back. Ain’t nobody got time for peeps who bri My first official holiday read and it was a gem! I couldn’t put it down and really should’ve set my alarm each night because 1am came around way too quick. I devoured it in two nights. Polly Phillips, you’ve written a cracker of a debut. We’ve all had that toxic friendship. I know many years ago I made a New Year’s resolution to cut my so called ‘friends’ who brought me down and didn’t bring positivity into my life. I cut those ties and I never looked back. Ain’t nobody got time for peeps who bring others down to make themselves feel better. Thankfully, no one was murdered in the real life process. Can I tell you, the pace of this book will have you absolutely hooked. Looking forward to my chat with Polly for Frankston City Libraries in February! Bookings will open in the New Year and Polly’s book is available in all good bookstores from late January. Follow @perthectpolly on Instagram for the toxic friendships countdown to get you in the mood.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Bev Dulson

    Raced through this story of a toxic friendship. The story is told by Bec who feels that her best friend Izzy isn't the friend she should be and may actually be meddling in her life. The book opens with the crumpled body of someone at the bottom of the stairs, as yet, we don't know who...did they fall? Where they pushed? Are they dead? You do find yourself at times getting so frustrated with Izzy - but here's the thing about this book, it's told from Bec's perspective and we all know there are thre Raced through this story of a toxic friendship. The story is told by Bec who feels that her best friend Izzy isn't the friend she should be and may actually be meddling in her life. The book opens with the crumpled body of someone at the bottom of the stairs, as yet, we don't know who...did they fall? Where they pushed? Are they dead? You do find yourself at times getting so frustrated with Izzy - but here's the thing about this book, it's told from Bec's perspective and we all know there are three sides to every side of a story, your side, their side and the truth. I didn't guess the twist at the end and I'm not 1oo% sure I understood the reasons why - but maybe I raced through it that quick, I missed a vital clue. Really enjoyed this. Thanks to Netgalley for the opportunity to review this book this is my honest opinion

  17. 4 out of 5

    Bridget

    Polly Phillips has written a cracking début set in London. Bec and Izzy have been best friends for years. Rebecca (Bec) Maloney is a features assistant with Flare magazine and Izzy Waverly is a wife and a mother to her little girl, Tilly. Although Bec and Izzy are very different, Bec has always thought that her best friend would look out for her, after all, Izzy has helped her through the difficult times in her life, like when her mother died. Izzy has a perfect life - an opulent house in Clapha Polly Phillips has written a cracking début set in London. Bec and Izzy have been best friends for years. Rebecca (Bec) Maloney is a features assistant with Flare magazine and Izzy Waverly is a wife and a mother to her little girl, Tilly. Although Bec and Izzy are very different, Bec has always thought that her best friend would look out for her, after all, Izzy has helped her through the difficult times in her life, like when her mother died. Izzy has a perfect life - an opulent house in Clapham, enough money to buy whatever she desires, the devotion of her gorgeous husband, Rich, and an adorable three-year-old. Bec, however, lives in a small, dingy flat with her boring boyfriend and her dog, Missy. When a tragic accident occurs that sees Izzy lying dead at the bottom of the stairs with blood pooling around her head, the police point the finger of suspicion at Bec. Polly Phillips has crafted a clever whodunit, and Bec and Izzy have supported each other through various life events, however, their relationship is not always plain sailing. The besties have a complex relationship dynamic and as tensions mount, a sinister tone to their relationship takes hold. My Best Friend’s Murder is narrated from Bec's viewpoint and I appreciated getting to know her, though I didn’t particularly like her or Izzy. Despite that, I still enjoyed following their relationship highs and lows. The men in their lives, especially Izzy's husband Rich, and Bec's fiancé, Ed, paled into virtual insignificance in relation to the prominence of the besties' relationship, but they obviously needed to be part of the story and were perfect in their roles. Not everyone was as they seemed in Polly Phillips' toxic début. Presenting the reader with issues arising from marriage, parenthood, jealousy, image, loss, family, wealth and guilt, as well as friendship, My Best Friend's Murder was a thoroughly entertaining and mesmerising drama mystery/thriller that I'm certain many will enjoy. I read My Best Friend's Murder in staves with other Pigeonholers as part of a group. A special thank you to Simon and Schuster UK, Polly Phillips, NetGalley and The Pigeonhole for a complimentary copy of this novel at my request. This review is my unbiased opinion.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Tracey Allen at Carpe Librum

    My Best Friend's Murder is the debut novel by Australian author Polly Phillips. Bec and Izzy are best friends but at the beginning of the book, Izzy's body is found at the bottom of the stairs in her house and Bec knows she's going to be considered the prime suspect. Set in London, the book then takes us back to a time before the incident and we become acquainted with Bec and Izzy's close circle of family and friends as well as their home and work situations. With the title telling us to expect a My Best Friend's Murder is the debut novel by Australian author Polly Phillips. Bec and Izzy are best friends but at the beginning of the book, Izzy's body is found at the bottom of the stairs in her house and Bec knows she's going to be considered the prime suspect. Set in London, the book then takes us back to a time before the incident and we become acquainted with Bec and Izzy's close circle of family and friends as well as their home and work situations. With the title telling us to expect a murder, an accident seems unlikely so the book becomes a 'whodunnit' of sorts. Both Bec and Izzy are vain, materialistic and unlikeable characters. Their friendship - if you could call it that - is toxic and unhealthy but they find themselves unable to move on in this unfolding domestic drama. "Looking at Izzy is like looking through a kaleidoscope. Fragments of my childhood whirl around us. Her teaching me to smoke at a bus-stop when we were fourteen. The night she held my hair back when I vomited all over her parent's kitchen. The moment we laughed so hard during a Friends marathon that I snorted Diet Coke over the sofa. Her hair might be glossier and her face thinner but she's still the one I called the moment I lost my virginity. The guy had barely left the room before I picked up the phone. Then there's how she held me up after my mum died. We've got so much history that sometimes I wonder where Izzy stops and I begin." Page 130 I always have a couple of books on the go at the same time, however being in the middle of reading The Swap by Robyn Harding (a Simon & Schuster title from last year) probably impacted my reading enjoyment of My Best Friend's Murder. The unhealthy relationship between the women in both of these books made me want to shake all of the characters by the shoulders and yell 'Get a grip, she's not worth it!' Don't you hate it when characters don't behave the way you want them to? Bec did two things in this book that made me want to scream! I'm not convinced My Best Friend's Murder has enough tension or suspense to be called a thriller. I was mildly surprised by the 'whodunnit' reveal, but too annoyed with one of the characters to be swept away by the revelation. My Best Friend's Murder is very readable domestic noir and a contemporary story about friendship, jealousy and envy. Friends or frenemies? You be the judge. * Copy courtesy of Simon & Schuster *

  19. 4 out of 5

    Becca - beckys.bookish.life

    "You're lying sprawled at the bottom of the stairs, legs bent, arms wide. The blood around the gash on your forehead is starting to crisp. I should be beside myself. Instead, I find myself circling, careful to avoid the blood, acting like i'm trying to work out what happened. Even though I already know" Let's be honest I LOVE a good toxic friendship story and I am glad I came across this one. I almost wonder if its weird to say this book was so much fun to read, when its about a friends murde "You're lying sprawled at the bottom of the stairs, legs bent, arms wide. The blood around the gash on your forehead is starting to crisp. I should be beside myself. Instead, I find myself circling, careful to avoid the blood, acting like i'm trying to work out what happened. Even though I already know" Let's be honest I LOVE a good toxic friendship story and I am glad I came across this one. I almost wonder if its weird to say this book was so much fun to read, when its about a friends murder but honestly, it was fun! Bec and Izzy were the ultimate frenemies with their entire friendship being based on suspicion, rivalry and betrayal. Bec has always known that she can't fully trust Izzy and is often suspicious of the things Izzy does and her motives behind them. Izzy quietly sits on the sidelines living her perfect life in her white picket fence house by day and plotting ways to ruin Bec by night . But what happens when Izzy's perfect life falls apart and she is found bent, broken and bloodied at the bottom of a flight of steps? And who could have done this? Polly Phillips did a fantastic job at hooking you in from the first chapter right through to the very last. I didn't even pick the murderer correctly which was such a great change because this is something I always predict early on in thrillers. Izzy was the WORST but she was also such an exciting character to follow and seeing her plots unfold was the best parts of this book. If you like shows like The Desperate Housewives you will definitely like this. So grab yourself a glass of wine and some popcorn and watch someone elses drama unfold ;)

  20. 5 out of 5

    Anjali (bookstersisters)

    This book was a fast paced addictive thriller about toxic friendships. Once I started listening I couldn’t stop wanting to see what happens to Bec and Izzie and who in fact is the actual victim. There were plenty of plot twists and I was kept guessing till the end. But eventhough I failed to predict the end, the big reveal failed to pack a punch. I was also left feeling as if there were lots of loose ends to be tied together. But overall this was completely entertaining and I would definitely re This book was a fast paced addictive thriller about toxic friendships. Once I started listening I couldn’t stop wanting to see what happens to Bec and Izzie and who in fact is the actual victim. There were plenty of plot twists and I was kept guessing till the end. But eventhough I failed to predict the end, the big reveal failed to pack a punch. I was also left feeling as if there were lots of loose ends to be tied together. But overall this was completely entertaining and I would definitely recommend it for fans of domestic thrillers. Narration : the audiobook narration was excellent and each character’s voice was done very well. Rating: 3.5 stars

  21. 4 out of 5

    Julie Lacey

    This is a great first novel from Polly Phillips. We know from the blurb that Izzy is found dead at the bottom of the stairs, but who pushed her? The story starts off with Bec and Ed’s engagement and even from the beginning you get a sense that Bec feels overshadowed by Izzy. Things are said and done throughout the book and it really seems like such a toxic friendship. Bec’s brother, Rob thinks he can see through Izzy and warns her about being her friend, but Bec’s feels that she can handle it. Th This is a great first novel from Polly Phillips. We know from the blurb that Izzy is found dead at the bottom of the stairs, but who pushed her? The story starts off with Bec and Ed’s engagement and even from the beginning you get a sense that Bec feels overshadowed by Izzy. Things are said and done throughout the book and it really seems like such a toxic friendship. Bec’s brother, Rob thinks he can see through Izzy and warns her about being her friend, but Bec’s feels that she can handle it. There’s also the attraction Bec’s has to Izzy’s husband, so the whole friendship thing seems a bit hypocritical. We do find out how Izzy ended up dead and I wasn’t expecting it to have turned out like that but it makes for a great story. This is a gripping domestic thriller. Thanks to Simon and Schuster UK and NetGalley for the opportunity to read this book.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Sue Jenkins

    I read this over 10 days with Pigeonhole and on the whole I enjoyed it. I felt it was somewhat of a slow starter but the pace improved as it went on. The storyline deals with the toxic relationship between Bec and Izzy, who were supposedly best friends but seemed to want to hurt one another in various ways! The ending was a shock but certain aspects I didn’t quite understand. Thanks Pigeon and Polly.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Claire

    My Best friends Murder is Polly Phillips debut novel and in terms of page turner who dunnits, I was pretty impressed, i read this book in 24hours. Bec is the main character who right from the prologue we are given just enough detail to suspect her as being perhaps guilty of murdering her best friend Izzy. Izzy seemingly has it all, a beautiful home in upmarket Clapham, the perfect, handsome and excellently remunerated husband and with a cute little girl thrown in. She’s been Bec’s bestie since a My Best friends Murder is Polly Phillips debut novel and in terms of page turner who dunnits, I was pretty impressed, i read this book in 24hours. Bec is the main character who right from the prologue we are given just enough detail to suspect her as being perhaps guilty of murdering her best friend Izzy. Izzy seemingly has it all, a beautiful home in upmarket Clapham, the perfect, handsome and excellently remunerated husband and with a cute little girl thrown in. She’s been Bec’s bestie since age 11 and really Bec has felt inferior to Izzy pretty much the entire time. Basically Bec has a chip the size of the grand canyon on her shoulder and is constantly comparing her life to Izzy’s. Bec has a crappy apartment, in a crappy suburb, a less than doting fiancé, who can’t seem to make many independent decisions in life without Izzy’s input and a career in writing for a magazine that is stuck in neutral. To make matters worse as far as best friends go, Izzy treats Bec appallingly, she is basically horrible and I spent a fair bit of time wishing Bec would stand up for herself. To make matters worse, Rich (Izzy’s husband) is Bec’s old childhood friend and secret crush from high school. So when Bec is found dead at the bottom of the stairs the reader could be forgiven for thinking/hoping that Bec did it! I hated Izzy and had slight flash backs to a gaslighting bf I once had in my life. It was actually triggering in some scenes. But Polly does it so so well and I for one couldn’t put this book done. The ending surprised me and I didn’t guess beforehand. I really recommend this book for lovers of mysteries. Thank you Simon and Schuster for my advanced reader copy of this book.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Samantha Bailey

    I was entranced by every delicious word in Polly Phillip's stellar, suspenseful debut, MY BEST FRIEND'S MURDER. Toxic friendship, secrets, and lies collide in a mesmerizing, gripping roller coaster of a read that hooked me from the first line. I was entranced by every delicious word in Polly Phillip's stellar, suspenseful debut, MY BEST FRIEND'S MURDER. Toxic friendship, secrets, and lies collide in a mesmerizing, gripping roller coaster of a read that hooked me from the first line.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Aus Reader

    I thought this book was so disappointing. It started with an interesting enough premise, and one a lot of us can relate to, the frenemies, the toxic relationship. Then came the end - what???? Better luck next time Polly Phillips!

  26. 4 out of 5

    The Cookster

    Rating: 3.4/5 This was one of those occasions where I was debating whether this was a 3 or 4 star book. There are sections of this novel that are exceptionally well done, but there were also a few too many lulls in proceedings, which ultimately persuaded me to (just) come down on the side of the lower mark. The observational characterisation of the relationship between Bec and Izzy is excellent. Are they the very best of friends ... or the very best of frenemies? Polly Phillips does a wonderful jo Rating: 3.4/5 This was one of those occasions where I was debating whether this was a 3 or 4 star book. There are sections of this novel that are exceptionally well done, but there were also a few too many lulls in proceedings, which ultimately persuaded me to (just) come down on the side of the lower mark. The observational characterisation of the relationship between Bec and Izzy is excellent. Are they the very best of friends ... or the very best of frenemies? Polly Phillips does a wonderful job of homing in on the toxicity that can exist below the surface of certain friendships. There are numerous delightfully cringeworthy moments when you can see situations developing. You sense that the potential for a major emotional car crash is just around the bend - but at the same time you can't (and don't want to) stop yourself from rubbernecking. There is much to like and enjoy about this debut novel. I would certainly recommend it and I will look out for the next offering from Polly Phillips. Many thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for supplying an ARC in return for an honest review.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Jo Spain

    One to watch next year for fans of the psych thriller genre. Think The Real Desperate Housewives one murderous. Best frenemies and a lot of passive aggressive gas-lighting. Expertly done.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Caroline Kerdouci

    My Best Friend’s murder begins with a prologue involving a dead body, the author immediately hooking the reader’s attention. It’s with a sense of anticipation and eagerness to meet the characters involved and discover the reasons why the lives of these individuals have culminated in tragedy for one family that I became invested in this storyline from the word go. I was unable to put the book down so that I read from cover to cover in the space of one gloomy afternoon. That initial events take pl My Best Friend’s murder begins with a prologue involving a dead body, the author immediately hooking the reader’s attention. It’s with a sense of anticipation and eagerness to meet the characters involved and discover the reasons why the lives of these individuals have culminated in tragedy for one family that I became invested in this storyline from the word go. I was unable to put the book down so that I read from cover to cover in the space of one gloomy afternoon. That initial events take place around the festive season injected a little Christmas spirit into my lacklustre feelings towards this time of year BUT it is by no means a festive novel. These pages contain very little goodwill but plenty of the more negative emotions such as jealousy, rivalry and revenge. I was bewitched by the levels of ill disguised hatred and malice some of these characters display and I hope you will be too! However, it’s a happy occasion on which we first meet best friends Bec and Izzy. Bec’s boyfriend Ed has finally proposed and she is keen to share the news with her friend. These two have known each other from the first day of senior school and whilst they may lead very different lives, their friendship has somehow managed to stand the test of time. Izzy is married to Rich and they are living in an exclusive street in Clapham with three year old daughter Tilly. Both come from well to do families and therefore are accustomed to leading quite a glamorous and privileged lifestyle. These four form a close knit circle with Izzy having previously worked for the same company Ed is a now partner in whilst Bec has known the Waverly family since Rich and his two brothers were knee high to grasshoppers. With the author divulging early on that Rich was Bec’s first schoolgirl crush she hints at just one reason for the jealousy and rivalry that plaque this friendship. From the outset it is apparent that the friendship between Bec and Izzy is not one of mutual love and respect. There is an underlying element of toxicity, the levels of which build nicely throughout so this pair can only be described as frenemies. It’s a concept I find fascinating, wondering how and why roles in this type of relationship are assumed and more importantly why the underdog, in this case Bec, doesn’t sever ties with the manipulator (Izzy). As you become more and more entwined in these characters lives the question in many ways is not how the tale ends but who is responsible. From the announcement of their engagement, to the party held in their honour at Izzy and Rich’s house, through to workplace developments, opportunities abound for Izzy to play her game of one upmanship, leaving Bec hurt, frustrated yet still desperate to remain in Izzy’s good books. Somewhere in the narrative there is an analogy used to refer to all the slights, misunderstandings and attempts to belittle that gives Izzy the power over Bec in their longstanding friendship. These million little cuts accumulate so that together they amount to a painful open wound that can possibly never be healed. This current status of Bec and Izzy’s friendship, with jealousy and rivalry escalating and spiralling out of control means it’s hardly surprising that something, or someone has got to give. Everyone unfortunate enough to come within Bec and Izzy’s orbit are caught up in this whirlwind of toxicity so that Rich and Ed, Bec’s brother Rob and his girlfriend become pawns in a game without rules, a game where the stakes are high. I love a dark storyline with less than likeable characters so this novel was right up my street, not quite pitched to perfection but nonetheless intoxicating. Storylines involving toxic friendships make for compulsive reading and My Best Friend’s murder is no exception. I’ve previously read some cracking novels along similar lines so one of my few criticisms is that this does follow an already well trodden path meaning it’s inevitable the reader can sense the direction events will take. I suppose I liken all the characters to pieces around a chess board. As you step closer to checkmate you know the various positions some of these pieces (characters) will find themselves in although who the winner will be is yet to be determined. I thought I’d guessed how this novel would conclude but oh my goodness I was so wrong. The ending was unexpected, and initially I thought strange and unlikely. However having given myself time to reflect , it is an ending that makes perfect sense. As a debut novel it is impressive and I’ll be sure to follow this author’s career with interest. My thanks as always to the publisher and Netgalley for giving me the opportunity to read.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Cass Moriarty

    My Best Friend’s Murder (Simon and Schuster 2021) is a debut by Western Australian writer Polly Phillips (formerly of the UK). A fast-paced, psychological thriller with possible unreliable narrators and/or characters, the story opens with young mum Izzy lying broken and bloodied at the bottom of the stairs, her best friend Bec gingerly stepping around her body. Is Bec responsible? Has she stumbled across a murder? Or an accident? Is she covering up for someone else? The possibilities are endless My Best Friend’s Murder (Simon and Schuster 2021) is a debut by Western Australian writer Polly Phillips (formerly of the UK). A fast-paced, psychological thriller with possible unreliable narrators and/or characters, the story opens with young mum Izzy lying broken and bloodied at the bottom of the stairs, her best friend Bec gingerly stepping around her body. Is Bec responsible? Has she stumbled across a murder? Or an accident? Is she covering up for someone else? The possibilities are endless. The narrative then chronicles the lifelong friendship of these two women who have been through a lot together. As the story progresses, the reader discovers that there are more complexities to their friendship than at first appear. Each has secret alliances and motivations. And when Izzy’s body is discovered, Bec is the main suspect. The book is set in the UK and with the characters’ ritzy lifestyles, high-end consumer fashion taste, trendy home décor and endless nannies, staff and popular jobs on magazines and media, it gives us a glimpse of how the other half live. For fans of Girl on a Train and other psychological crime thrillers where the reliability of the narrator is called into question, this is a great story that explores the intricacies of the ‘frenemy’ relationship. The book starts strong with a great opening premise and a lovely investigation of character. I felt the last section of the book, especially the ending, was a bit rushed and a little contrived, and the resolution, when it comes, was not entirely satisfying for me. But having said that, it is a great debut, following a popular psychological trope, with a large cast of characters – all potentially witnesses, perpetrators or victims.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Beth Chats Books

    This was a enjoyable domestic thriller with a sweeping and fun plot line. While this book had very well recognised thriller tropes and themes e.g the best friend/frenemy dynamic, cheating husbands and an unreliable narrator. I think this was written competently and I became very immersed in the thriller storyline. I didn’t see the reveal coming which is always a pleasant surprise reading a thriller whodunnit. This story follows the intense and pretty warped relationship between best friends Izzy This was a enjoyable domestic thriller with a sweeping and fun plot line. While this book had very well recognised thriller tropes and themes e.g the best friend/frenemy dynamic, cheating husbands and an unreliable narrator. I think this was written competently and I became very immersed in the thriller storyline. I didn’t see the reveal coming which is always a pleasant surprise reading a thriller whodunnit. This story follows the intense and pretty warped relationship between best friends Izzy and Bec. The prologue starts with a dead body at the foot of the stairs, before opening the novel with Bec’s engagement and we are cast forth on the mystery/suspense from there. I found the core cast of characters well fleshed out and flawed. Guiltily I also loved to hate the victim and did tend to side with her bestie! I just found the reveal a little too drawn out at the end. After the pivotal wrapping up event took place at around 70% into the book, the final reveal of who the murder was just took a little too long in my opinion. But I was really pleased with the pacing of this thriller, the character development and the way the author comprised this plot. This is a very strong thriller writer and I eagerly await more from this author very soon. Thanks to the author Polly Phillips, Simon and Schuster UK and NetGalley for a review copy in exchange for an honest review.

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